Thursday, September 3, 2009

Mission Impossible and Other Happenings

I don't know why, but I decided that today would be a good day to start one of those projects that you never really have time for. The project this time is cleaning out the barn. This is one of those huge tasks where everything gets a lot worse before it gets better and it takes forever. Everything winds up in the barn. Whenever Jason or my Dad need something to find a home they just put it in the aisle of the barn. Or when Jason doesn't feel like putting things back in the equipment shed or wherever they belong he just . . . leaves it in the aisle of the barn. This drives me insane. I end up sticking this stuff somewhere and eventually I end up with an overflowing barn that is full of not only the myriad of supplies needed to care for all of the horses but also everyone else's junk as well.

Thus the painful process of cleaning, sorting, throwing out and rearranging began this afternoon and continued on until almost 8:30pm. When my dad came driving up to the barn as I was only about an hour into the process he made the comment "I see you've started Mission Impossible here." I would say that is a very appropriate description. The barn aisle looked like a tornado had gone through it. It still does. The good news is that once I finally start a project like this I stay on it until it is done. My grand plans for tomorrow include picking up where I left off and tackling my tack room, the office and the feed room in the barn as well as sweeping out the hay loft. I should sleep really well tomorrow night.

The goats were fascinated by the mess I was creating in the barn

Everyone on the farm was de-wormed again on Tuesday. For the third time I administered the wormer not by lugging around a zillion halters, chasing the runners, and wearing paste wormer all over myself, but by simply putting the wormer into everyone's feed. Once again it worked like a charm. Every horse gobbled up every single bite and every bit of wormer went down the hatch with no mess, no waste, and no flinging heads.

As I mentioned in my previous post about this, I think the reason I have 100% success with this approach is the feedbags. The horses can't walk away from their food to go eat hay or graze, they can't walk away from the food period, they just have to eat it. I think my other advantage is every horse on the farm is fed soaked feed every day anyway, so they are used to wet feed. As we all know supplements (and wormer!) stick better to wet feed. I also add a tiny bit of dried molasses as well, sprinkled right on the paste wormer, and then I mix.

Feed laced with paste wormer; my next step is to sprinkle just a little bit of dried molasses onto the wormer and then mix. Everyone gobbled it up.
My other interesting experiment of the week involved Fritos. I was randomly munching on a bag of Fritos as I was destroying the barn today. I needed to go around to the pastures to scrub and fill water troughs so I carried my little bag of Fritos along with me. The big boys came up to their trough as I was scrubbing away and while I was waiting for it to fill back up I offered them some of my Fritos. I had a variety of responses.
Elfin: Are you trying to poison me!!???
Apollo: He took two in his mouth, crunched on them, and then spit them out.
Ivan: Happily ate his first two fritos but then didn't want the next ones I offered to him.
Chance: If his nose could have fit into the bag he would have happily shoved it in there to eat them all.
Dustin: That was good, got anymore of those?
Leo: He ate his handful of Fritos so fast I don't know if he actually tasted them.
I'm off to go tuck in the World's Cutest Fainting Goats and to rest up for the completion (hopefully) of Mission Impossible tomorrow.

Homer and Ivan; Homer is a retired show hunter and Ivan a retired Grand Prix jumper. I've actually ridden Ivan a few times and he was lovely to ride. Really light in the bridle, naturally very light on his forehand and very soft and responsive to the aids.
Apollo (retired dressage horse) and Elfin (retired show hunter)
Dustin (retired Grand Prix jumper) in the front; L-R in the back Baby (retired show hunter and the fanciest hunter mover I have ever seen; everyone that sees him trot says "wow"), Tony (nationally ranked in the a/o hunters and also did the equitation), Trigger (retired show hunter) and Leo (showed through 4th level dressage and also in the hunters)
Norman, retired pony hunter, enjoying a meal
Two of my girls, Sky and Bridget
Trillion in the back (nationally ranked show hunter), Faune (nationally ranked hunter as well), Winston (retired show hunter), and Asterik (retired from the a/o hunters and jumpers) in the middle, and Sebastian in the front. Sebastian is an awesome horse and he did everything, A cicuit hunters, jumpers, fox hunting, just a great all around horse.
Ivan and Apollo; these two are best friends and have been for a few years now.
Faune and Sebastian
MyLight (retired dressage horse), Buffy (retired show hunter), and Missy (former dude ranch pony)
Lily (retired jumper) and Missy; Missy was very lucky to be rescued by a great family after the dude ranch sent her to a low end auction to go to the kill buyer after she was no longer sound enough to work in the string. She taught one of their daughters to ride and now they have given her a great retirement.

3 comments:

Kate said...

I've been to a very nice dude ranch in Arizona a couple of times when my kids were small - we all had a great time - but it's sad to think that behind that great time were a bunch of hard-working horses that, while well-cared for, were just disposable equipment to be sent off to auction when they were used up. Great that Missy was one of the exceptions to the rule.

When you're done with your barn, you can come to my place and do my barn - and my house, which is worse!

ezra_pandora said...

Yeah, I agree with Kate, my HOUSE is mission impossible. lol with two little boys who need constant entertainment and if they don't have it, they make it. Makes for a pretty messy house. lol

LuLo Designs/Blue Eyed Tango said...

I would be going crazy too with everyone dumping things into the barn! You have quite a job ahead of you...but you've probably already gotten it done by now and have moved onto your tack room...I'm late on making my rounds! Love the photo your two girls...that tree branch hanging down adds so much interest to the two horses approaching! I love the last one too! Cute! Have a great Labor Day!